Downtown Washington D.C., DC

National Archives showing an administrative buidling and heritage architecture
Art galleries, museums and theaters as well as vibrant entertainment, nightlife and shopping districts await in this city center neighborhood.

Downtown Washington D.C. is an urban city center neighborhood where people live, play and work. It’s a clean, safe and walkable area with wide avenues and tree-lined pavements. In Downtown Washington D.C. you’ll discover some of the city’s best galleries and museums, eclectic restaurants and bustling nightlife. Watch sporting events, attend star-studded concerts and relax in leafy parks.

Art and history enthusiasts are spoiled for choice in Downtown Washington D.C. Retrace the history of American architecture, design and urban planning at the National Building Museum. Interact with the hands-on displays and inspect the photography exhibitions at the National Geographic Museum. Visit the galleries of the National Archives Museum and see a celebration of women’s art at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Find more museums in the Penn Quarter, including the International Spy Museum and Marian Koshland Science Museum. Admire presidential portraits at the National Portrait Gallery and a showcase of national art at Smithsonian American Art Museum. Catch a performance at the Ford’s Theater and Shakespeare Theatre Company or spot celebrity waxwork models at Madame Tussaud’s Washington D.C. Watch concerts by famous acts or basketball and ice hockey matches at the Verizon Center.

Stroll through Chinatown, where Asian shops and restaurants share the streets with lively pubs and nightclubs. Check out the Friendship Archway, a Chinese gateway decorated with a multi-tiered roof and around 270 painted dragons.

Go to Lafayette Square, from where you can catch a glimpse of the iconic White House. Like nearby Farragut Square, Franklin Square and McPherson Square, it’s a great place to sit and watch the world go by.

Downtown Washington D.C. is served by six metro stations, which provide access to the city’s five Metrorail lines. It’s also one of the city’s most bike-friendly neighborhoods.

Visit the official websites of the Downtown Washington D.C.’s galleries and museums for admission fees, opening times and event schedules.

Popular places to visit

Things to do

Downtown Washington D.C. Hotel Deals

Washington Plaza Hotel
Washington Plaza Hotel
4 out of 5
10 Thomas Circle NW, Washington, DC
The price is $119 per night from May 27 to May 28
$138 total
includes taxes & fees
May 27 - May 28
Book a stay at this business-friendly hotel in Washington. Enjoy free WiFi, an outdoor pool, and breakfast (surcharge). Our guests praise the breakfast and the ...
8.6/10 Excellent! (3,255 reviews)
"I did not enjoy paying a $50 per night parking fee. I think thats insane and i would've never stayed if i was aware of that charge before booking."

Reviewed on May 16, 2024

Washington Plaza Hotel
Capital Hilton
Capital Hilton
4 out of 5
1001 16th St NW, Washington, DC
The price is $135 per night from Jun 1 to Jun 2
$186 total
includes taxes & fees
Jun 1 - Jun 2